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Home / News / India /  Coffee grower in Karnataka accuses Cafe Coffee Day of cheating, seeks repayment

BENGALURU : K.Nandish, a coffee grower in Chikmagalur district of Karnataka, on Wednesday alleged that Cafe Coffee Day continues to evade paying him dues totalling to over 45 lakhs nor had appeared before the courts.

“They (CCD) were supposed to appear before the court last month (6 October) but nothing has happened so far," Nandish, a coffee planter said.

Nandish has filed a cheque bounce case against Malavika Hegde, a non-executive director in Cafe Coffee Day and wife of the company’s late founder V.G.Siddhartha, Coffee Day Global Limited, its chief executive and other senior officials over non-payment of dues.

According to case filed by Nandish , the cheques which were not honoured by the bank due to insufficient funds, amount to 45,38, 554 lakhs.

"The accused have issued the Cheques knowing fu1Iy well that, they have got insufficient funds and with common intention of cheating and without arranging to honour the same and have committed an offence punishable Under Section 138 of the Negotiable Instruments Act and is liable to be punished according to law," according to the filing.

The company declined to comment on the case.

Nandish said that he had been doing business with Amalgamated Bean Coffee Trading Co for over 15 years and Siddhartha had never defaulted on payments. But the situation rapidly changed since his death last July.

Siddhartha was one of the biggest names in the coffee industry and his company had provided jobs for over 100,000 people directly and indirectly. But rising debt and alleged harassment by income tax officials forced the 59-year old to take his own life last July that sent the company he founded into a downward spiral.

Tejaswi Halekote, the advocate appearing for Nandish said that there seems to be no action taken against the company or its directors despite the orders by the court.

"We had outstanding payments to 1020 Coffee planters of Chickmagalur and Hassan one year back. We have fully paid back 700+ planters in the last 11 months," a spokesperson for Cafe Coffee Day said in a statement on Wednesday.

The company said that it had made part payments to the remaining planters..

"The group's fund raising plans were hampered by the COVID-19 pandemic and hence the delay in completing the payments. But we remain committed to meeting all our obligations," the company said.

The next hearing of the case is scheduled for 20 November.

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